Classroom Resources to Teach about War in Ukraine
As events unfold in Ukraine, teachers will be asked questions to help students understand current events in real-time. For some students, these events may seem disconnected from their everyday lives; for others, these events may be very close to home.
Teachers will not have all of the answers to student questions, but we can be present, listen, respond with accurate information, and provide support to students to process these events. Here are some resources that can help.
- Resources to Respond to Tragedy and Violence is an Illinois Civics blog with SEL-aligned practices to engage student voices in sharing their questions, concerns, and lived experiences with events in Ukraine.
- Edutopia has published a blog Helping Your Students Cope With a Violent World
- The American Psychological Association has differentiated supports:
- Resilience in a Time of War: Tips for parents and teachers of elementary school students.
- Resilience in a Time of War: Tips for parents and teachers of middle school students.
- Why the Russia-Ukraine Crisis is Relevant to Teachers from EdWeek provides insights from educational thought leaders about what classrooms can do to help students process events.
- EdWeek has five tips for talking with students about the Russia-Ukraine war.
- The Educating for American Democracy Roadmap has resources for K-12 around the theme of “People in The World.” with driving questions for both civics and history classrooms.
- iCivics has curriculum units for both middle and high school students: Foreign Policy: War and Peace and Everything In-Between.
- iCivics has just launched a new game, Convene the Council, where students will take on the role of President of the United States and respond to world events with the support of their National Security Council. There are supports for ELL students.
- The Bill of Rights Institute is hosting a “Join the Debate” on the topic of increasing United States military aid to Ukraine. There are supporting materials to ground student responses. BRI will be giving away two $25 gift cards, one to each person providing the best defense of each side of the debate. Both students will also win BRI swag. Each student winner will also be entered for a chance to win a grand prize of a $1,000 cash scholarship. Additionally, the referring teachers for both students will each win a $25 gift card and BRI swag. This question will run from 3/3/22 to 3/17/22
- Illinois Holocaust Museum and Education Center is hosting a free lunch and learn on March 14 at noon. Join Andrew Oleksiuk, the Museum’s Media Technology Specialist for Exhibitions and Events, for a colorful journey through Ukraine’s 1,000-year history to the present day, drawing on Andrew’s expertise as a Ukrainian-American artist and educator.
- The News Literacy Project has created a resource, Combating misinformation about the war in Ukraine.
- AllSides or FlipSide: News aggregator sites dedicated to presenting current events from multiple perspectives.
- Getting Ukraine-Russia News From TikTok: Ways teachers can talk to students about what they’re hearing on social media and address their concerns.
- Newsela has a text set and accompanying elementary/middle/high school lesson guides with relevant articles, including NATO’s role in the situation and the Russian invasion itself.
- A team at UMass-Amherst has developed this “media literacy choice board” on the crisis, focusing on the critical examination of articles and visual sources.
- The Choices Program at Brown University has developed this lesson delving into the background of Unrest in Ukraine and a current lesson plan on The Ukraine Crisis.
- PBS Classroom publishes daily lesson plans around current events. Here are some recent links to news stories about the Ukraine Crisis.
- The New York Times provides lesson plans and resources for teaching about Ukraine.
- Origins — The Collapse of the Soviet Union: Provides a deeper understanding of the crisis in Ukraine; teachers may want to provide more historical context. This source provides a brief overview of the end of the Cold War and the fall of the Soviet Union.
- C-SPAN Classroom: Educators can access video clips of reactions to the Russian invasion of Ukraine from various sources.
- The New York City Department of Education has created the Conflict In Ukraine Resource Guide with a number of quality resources for teaching about the conflict.
- The Georgia Department of Education teamed with veterans of the Field of Intelligence to create this lesson, “Conflict between Ukraine and Russia in 2022.” This lesson (vetted by professionals in the field of Intelligence) is designed to allow high school students to explore the historical background of the conflict between Ukraine and Russia in 2022 and its potential U.S. impact. It is written with connections to U.S. History, World History, and World Geography and is adaptable to each course.